Ian McDermid, who played Emperor Palpatine in Return of the Jedi and all three of the Star Wars prequels, told XGN (via the Hounds Tooth Blog) during an interview at the Amsterdam Comic Con that he will not appear in the forthcoming inbetweenquel Rogue One: A Star Wars Story.
The film will bring together a number of characters who have appeared in either the Prequel Trilogy or the original Star Wars films, including Bail Organa and Darth Vader.
But not the man who gave Vader a job after his little adventure in the volcano at the end of Revenge of the Sith. That guy's going to be nowhere to be seen.
"I don't feature in that myself, but I understand that Darth Vader may be making an appearance," McDermid says in the video embedded below.
Rogue One: A Star Wars Story is the first of Disney/Lucasfilm's new stand-alone films, live-action movies that are set outside of the "Episode" movie structure that largely follows the Skywalker family. The story for Rogue One is born from the crawl at the start of the original Star Wars: Episode IV - A New Hope.
"It is a period of civil war. Rebel spaceships, striking from a hidden base, have won their first victory against the evil Galactic Empire," the opening crawl read. "During the battle, Rebel spies managed to steal secret plans to the Empire's ultimate weapon, the DEATH STAR, an armored space station with enough power to destroy an entire planet."
Rogue One tells the story of those Rebel spies.
Rogue One: A Star Wars Story is directed by Gareth Edwards, and stars Felicity Jones, Mads Mikkelsen, Alan Tudyk, Donnie Yen, Ben Mendelsohn, Forest Whitaker, and Diego Luna. It hits theaters December 16, 2016.